Why this obsession with anonymous sex?
June 19, 2006 5:54 PM   Subscribe

I'm a normal, straightforward, simple guy. Why do I feel the need to participate in anonymous sex with couple?

A little bit about my situation. I'm a normal guy, brought up in a moderate manner. Have a girlfriend [8 yrs + ]. We have a moderate-to-good sex life.

I'm perfectly stable in the sense that I don't perve, act leacherous, watch excessive amounts of porn (on average 2 times a month) or otherwise. My days aren't spent thinking about sex, I just get up and live a normal day-to-day life.

The problem is that in the last 6 months the idea of meeting a random couple for sex obsesses my fantasies. I feel ashamed of it and like I'm being dragged around by my b***s. It just seems very odd. It's never a woman, always a couple and there is no sexual contact between us men.

Don't ever get me wrong. I would NEVER EVER do this or even hint at it. I would never cheat and also I don't think my own morality would let me, even if I were single.

How the HECK do I get rid of this thing? I'm scared that if I don't nip it in the bud, it might snowball out of proportion
posted by gadha to Human Relations (15 answers total)

My first concern would be that you feel as if your fantasies are something you have to "get rid of."

People have fantasies of every possible shape and stripe. They're part and parcel of being sexual and/or sensual human beings, just as valid and important as love, fear, hope, anxiety, lust, and all those other indescribable scribbles inbetween.

The trouble comes in when we are raised to believe that fantasy is a liability, that the mere act of envisioning something in one's mind counts as a crime against (as you put it) one's "own morality." It's important, I think, to recognize this for what it is: a fairly arbitrary conditioning that's been imposed on you by the society in which you were brought up.

Without going too deep into this (as I'm sure others will do more eloquently): allow yourself to have fantasies. You'll do yourself more harm by trying to repress and beat them out of yourself than you will by simply creating a mental space for them to exist. If you're genuinely worried about carrying out a fantasy beyond your own self-control, then talk to somebody (qualified) about it. But if it's just a fantasy, in and of itself, you owe it to yourself emotionally to find a way to be comfortable with that inner life. We've all got one.

It might also help to talk about your fantasies with your girlfriend. You've been together for eight-plus years. With the sort of intimacy and trust that such a long-term relationship must engender, what on earth could you possibly be hiding (or even want to hide) from her at this point? If you can manage to do so without too much histrionics or self-flagellation, you may even find the reassurance you need right by your side.
posted by mykescipark at 6:08 PM on June 19, 2006

I would never cheat and also I don't think my own morality would let me, even if I were single.

What wouldn't your morality let do if you were single? Have a threesome with a couple? Why, because it would mean they were 'cheating' on each other?

Interestingly absent from your post is your prediction as to what your girlfriend would think if you told her about this fantasy. And that's important. Because maybe you and she can just talk about it while you're having sex with each other, and that can be as far as it ever goes.

Regardless, you are being way too hard on yourself. There is nothing "wrong" with having this fantasy. Maybe if you loosened up and allowed yourself to discuss it and think about it without feeling guilty, you would find what about anonymous sex that appeals to you, and maybe you can sublimate that into your monogamous relationship.

On preview, I see that mykescipark has covered most of this.
posted by bingo at 6:12 PM on June 19, 2006

Snowball out of proportion? It's a fantasy.

Fantasies come and go and are ultimately meaningless unless you act them out. You don't seem to want to act it out, and as a result you probably won't.

If you're having thoughts that are concerning you (whether or not they're something to actually be concerned about) and you feel you're having trouble managing them then perhaps consider therapy or the like.

I think you're mainly worried about something that doesn't actually mean anything more than you let it mean.
posted by Matt Oneiros at 6:14 PM on June 19, 2006

Well, I don't think you're abnormal, wierd, or crazy, for starters. The idea of a threesome turns you on, that's all. With all the truly crazy sexual fantasies out there, yours seems pretty tame in comparison. So don't sweat it.

Would your girlfriend be interested in something like this? I'm guessing a big NO, which is why you've written this question. One obvious thing would be to bring up the subject, and see her reaction. But again, I think you have the answer there already.

So do you act on it? You say you never would but it sounds like you're trying to convince yourself as much as us anonymous folk here. Is doing it with couples a fetish? Do you have to fantasize about it when you're with your girlfriend (or alone) to get off?

Again, I don't think you've got a real big kink here, but you do have a big decision to make. If you want to continue with your relationship I'd suggest being honest with your gf. It sounds a bit late to "nip it in the bud", and I don't know if that's healthy anyway. Maybe it's just a phase, maybe it's really what you fundamentally like and will like for the rest of your sex life. You've gotta figure it out. Hope this helps.
posted by zardoz at 6:20 PM on June 19, 2006

Response by poster: Umm to clarify on zardoz's comment. When I'm with her it's all about me and her. This stuff doesn't even come up at all in my head. I am totally fulfilled and happy with her. It's when I'm alone that the dance in my head begins.
posted by gadha at 6:29 PM on June 19, 2006

Other posters have tried to help give you perspective on your question. I've nothing to add there other than to say that many of their points are, of course, valid.

If you do wish to alleviate the intensity of the fantasy (you use the word obsess in your post), you might try thinking about what a real couple would go through after a threesome with an anonymous stranger. While many do so, enjoy it, et cetera, for others it can be a point of tension in the relationship or give rise to other negative feelings of jealousy, et cetera. Put yourself in their shoes, after the imagined threesome occured (and you've left) and play it out from there.
posted by gage at 6:29 PM on June 19, 2006

Sometimes, trying to force a fantasy out of your mind can give it a stronger hold on you. Sounds like that's what's happening here: the more you tell yourself that this one is bad, wrong and forbidden, the hotter it gets.

I know this sounds like a paradox, but if you let yourself enjoy it AS A FANTASY and trust that you won't be forced to act on it, it may fade over time. Think of all the girls you lusted after in high school. You aren't still obsessed with them, are you? This one will fade too if you let it take its course.
posted by nebulawindphone at 6:38 PM on June 19, 2006

Best answer: As nebulawindphone said, thinking about it in terms of "Oh wow, that's so wrong! I could never, ever let myself do that!" just makes it hotter. Just let yourself have the fantasy--that's all it is, really.

If you're intent on getting it out of your mind, think about the actual logistics and time involved in a threesome, even an anonymous one. I've been on both sides, and it's ultimately a pain in the ass.

First, if you're part of the couple (which doesn't seem like a problem for you, since your fantasy involves you being the third person) you have to find someone you can both agree on, then set up a date to meet and greet and figure out if they're crazy or not. A lot of the time you're not going to find anyone, because you're working with a limited pool of "applicants." You both have to agree on the third person, which means a lot of discussion about sexual taste and why you find someone attractive. You can spend hours looking at people, profiles, pictures, etc. and not get anywhere. Once you do find someone, you have to make sure that he's not crazy. It puts a real damper on the night when you're constantly thinking, "Is he going to kill us, store us in his walk-in freezer, and eat us over the next several months?"

If you're the third person, you have a similar problem. You have to find a couple that you find attractive (and don't kid yourself, the guy has to be attractive too, otherwise you'll just wind up thinking, "Oh wow, I'm having a threesome and the guy is ugly! What the hell am I doing?"). They also have to be not-crazy and you have to be comfortable with them. This is even harder for you, because while they have a limited choice, yours is even worse. There are most definitely not a lot of heterosexual couples looking for an anonymous third.

You have to deal with the pressure of having two people find you attractive! You have to satisfy them both. While you might not be directly having sex with the other guy, he's gonna be there, and you're going to be a component in him getting off. Otherwise he wouldn't be there. And so you have to deal with that, as well as having to satisfy the woman. Ostensibly, they would have a prior sexual relationship, and so he would already know how to get her off. You don't. You are the inferior sexual partner in this situation.

Now, obviously the threesome part would have to be hot. There would be no reason to do it otherwise. But afterwards? You're all cleaning up, and there's some awkward small talk, and you're all naked and don't know anything about each other. Would you be spending the night with them? Going home right after? Cause both options are pretty damn awkward with people you don't know.

In your mind, the threesome is the threesome itself, not the things that come along with it. I haven't even detailed anything that would go wrong! One-on-one anonymous sex is weird enough, but when you add a couple to the dynamic, pretty much any weird thing you could imagine is so much more likely to happen.

There's nothing wrong with the fantasy of a threesome, or the act itself. You don't want to go through with it, obviously, and you don't have to. Just let it play itself out in your mind. If you're a normal, sexually-healthy person (and that includes the occasional threesome fantasy), it'll pass on its own.
posted by billybunny at 8:25 PM on June 19, 2006

Your problem appears to be anxiety, not any sort of alleged "perversion." Consult a professional therapist.
posted by Ironmouth at 9:08 PM on June 19, 2006

Consult a professional therapist.

This advice, as it so often is, is wrongheaded and potentially damaging. Do not consult a 'professional therapist' unless you sincerely believe that you are unable to manage your own fantasy life without outside intervention.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 11:22 PM on June 19, 2006

Potentially damaging? That seems quite hyperbolic to me.
posted by ludwig_van at 12:04 AM on June 20, 2006

stavrosthewonderchicken writes "Consult a professional therapist.

"This advice, as it so often is, is wrongheaded and potentially damaging. Do not consult a 'professional therapist' unless you sincerely believe that you are unable to manage your own fantasy life without outside intervention."

Stavros, I usually nod a lot while I read your comments. Not this one, however.

The poster is having some pretty unpleasant issues arising from his inability to see that hey, it's just a fantasy. If it were a teenaged boy posting, saying that for the past six months the only thing he's getting turned on by is the idea of sex with men, and oh-my-God-am-I-gay, you'd be telling him to go to a therapist right quick--not to 'cure' him, but to help him deal.

Same thing here.
posted by dirtynumbangelboy at 4:16 AM on June 20, 2006

I just want to tell you not to worry so much: many many many of us get turned on by thinking about stuff that we wouldn't actually go through with in reality. That's the nature of fantasy. Enjoy it! The fact that yours is so very common, and doesn't seem to be affecting your attraction to your girlfriend, suggests to me you have absolutely nothing to worry about.
posted by CunningLinguist at 4:32 AM on June 20, 2006

I was hospitalized 2 years ago for an extreme anxiety attack with obsessive thoughts that I couldn't get rid of. For me, medication was the key. There was also an element of the thoughts being taboo which made them persist even stronger. As others have said here, fantasies about threesomes/anonyomous sex are pretty run-of-the-mill. I'd suggest thinking about the reasons behind these thoughts -- does it just appeal to you because it's taboo? You might find that the actual hookup has very little appeal, it's really the forbidden aspect that has such a grip on you.

Despite comments above, therapists can help and it's not a sign of personal failure if you find unpleasant thoughts hard to control. If it's bothering you that much, find someone professional to help you sort it out.
posted by mattholomew at 5:02 AM on June 20, 2006

If it were a teenaged boy posting, saying that for the past six months the only thing he's getting turned on by is the idea of sex with men, and oh-my-God-am-I-gay, you'd be telling him to go to a therapist right quick--not to 'cure' him, but to help him deal.

Not a fucking chance in hell I would be doing that.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 6:17 AM on June 20, 2006

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